NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Fans are flocking to sports stores to get their hands on some red-hot Derek Jeter merchandise celebrating his 3000th hit.

Everything from t-shirts to cups to baseball hats, customers are lining up to snag a piece of history.

“He’s a gentleman off the field, he’s a class act, that’s all there is to it,” said fan Joe Spreitzer, who was among the first inside the Modell’s store in midtown Saturday night.

He couldn’t wait to squeeze into a Jeter t-shirt and says he puts the captain right up there with Yankee‘s greats like Mickey Mantle and others.

“Stop and think about it, out of all the superstars they’ve had, he’s the only Yankee that got 3,000 hits,” said Spreitzer. “So what does that tell you?”  

WCBS 880’S Sophia Hall reports: Fans Excited They Witnessed History

Jeter getting his 3,000th hit at Saturday’s game is truly one for the history books and 23-year-old Christian Lopez of Highland Mills caught the ball.

“I saw the ball roll in front of me and I jumped on it,” said Lopez. “I thought, wow this is it.” 

Sports memorabilia experts estimate its value at as much as $250,000 but Lopez turned it back in, his gift to his favorite player. 

Photos: Jeter Homers For No. 3,000

“Mr. Jeter deserved it,” he said. “I wasn’t going to take that away from him.” 

New York Yankees fan Christian Lopez (L) poses with Derek Jeter #2 after catching a home run which was the 3000th of Derek Jeter's career at Yankee Stadium on July 9, 2011. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)

“I had an opportunity to meet him a while ago. He got the ticket from his girlfriend,” said Jeter. “He’ll be paying her back for quite some time.” 

Still, Lopez didn’t go away empty-handed. He gets four tickets for every game for the rest of the season, a few signed balls and bats and what he wanted most, a face-to-face with his hero.

“Making it Jeter’s 3000th hit, made it so much sweeter,” said Lopez. 

Jeter is the fifth Yankees player to achieve 3,000 hits, but the only one to do it while playing for New York. Hall of Famers Dave Winfield, Rickey Henderson, Paul Waner and Boggs all got No. 3,000 with other clubs.

What do you think of Jeter’s 3,000th hit? Sound off below in our comments section…

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (9)
  1. littlestar says:

    Derek Jeter is a great Yankee,and a class act. Monument indeed. But please. The real heroes are serving in Afghanistan, getting shot, dismembered. It’s not the guy with 3000 hits…..

  2. JMS says:

    On a serious note, leave it to Jeter to get his 3,000th hit in such grand fashion. 5 for 5 w/a dinger for the big one (and a monster blast at that). This guy has made a career out of shining in the biggest moments and you just can’t say enough about the him. Even the biggest detractors who call him overrated would have to admit that this accomplishment, and the way he did it, was unbeleivable.

  3. JMS says:

    Hey Dan Te: It doesn’t come off to well when you make two spelling errors in the same post where you call other people stupid(jeeter instead of Jeter, roll instead of row).

  4. lydia says:

    What a waste of space,We really should be talking about how Israel is more superiour to Palestine.I am a 28 years old doctor, mature and beautiful.and now I am seeking a good man who can give me real love , so i got a username Andromeda2002 on–s’e’ek’c’ou’ga’r.c óm–.it is the first and best club for y’ounger women and old’er men, or older women and y’ounger men,to int’eract with each other. Maybe you wanna ch’eck ‘it out or tell your friends!

  5. DanTe says:

    Stupid jeeter fans riding around all night honking 3 times in a roll. Like THEY had just hit 3,000. Pathetic losers living vicariously through other people’s achievements.

  6. syd fernandez says:

    The Yankee’s are also paying for Christian’s type 2 diabetes medication that he will need when he eats a few more stadium hot dogs. Oh wait, everyone that pays taxes or pays for medical insurance will pay for his medical bills. More money for the Yankees to sign God next year.

  7. nathan says:

    What a waste of space,We really should be talking about how Israel is more superiour to Palestine.

    1. joshsucks says:

      You’re so smart you can’t even spell superior.

    2. CK says:

      You’re a waste of space!

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